The Plight of Egypt’s Coptic Christians


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Raymond Ibrahim:

This is difficult to answer, as there are several variables and contexts.  For starters, emigration is not the solution for most Copts; not only is it impractical for 10 million people to pack up and leave, many Copts do not wish to abandon Egypt, seeing it as their home more than Muslims; some even say they would rather die than abandon their motherland.  Their best bet is for a secular and free government to form; the sort of government the youth who initiated the Revolution wanted.  Of course, with each passing day it becomes clear that it is the Islamists, the Muslim Brotherhood followed by the Salafis, who will play the greatest role in shaping Egypt’s future.  Still, there are many secular Egyptian’s who oppose the Islamists just as much, if not more than the Copts.  Copts need to—and often do—ally with these parties, which stress, not “Muslim” or “Christian” as an identity, but “Egyptian.”  For the bottom line is, an Islamist government will not only be bad for Christians, but secularized Muslims as well, and these are not an insignificant group.  Likewise, though this is out of the hands of Copts and seculars, U.S. diplomacy could help empower the former, though the Obama administration appears more interested in aiding Islamists like the Muslim Brotherhood.  So, overall, it is a bad situation, though only the future can tell what will ultimately happen, though one is not optimistic.

What Does The Future Hold? [Afterthoughts by Wolff Bachner]

The fate of the Copts is the same as that of every Christian society in the Middle East living under the domination of Islam. Despite the portrayal of Islam as the ‘Religion of Peace and Tolerance”  that Western Leaders and mainstream media constantly parrot like brainwashed Dhimmis, the truth is far different. Christianity in Muslim countries is experiencing its death throes at the hand of Islam. Lebanon has dwindled down from an 84% Christian majority to a 35% Christian Minority with hundreds more Christians fleeing the country every day. Iraq’s once vibrant Christian community has been reduced to less than 200,000 and according to Archbishop Bashar Warda of Erbil, “Iraq’s ancient Christian community has run out of time and will disappear soon.” Echoing Archbishop Warda’s words was Rev. Jean Benjamin Sleiman, the Catholic Archbishop of Baghdad, who said, “I fear the extinction of Christianity in Iraq and the Middle East.”

While Iraq and Lebanon have been in the midst of upheaval and war for decades, Egypt has been at peace since the early 1970′s and the horrors of civil war cannot explain the destruction of Egypt’s Coptic Community. The long suppressed Muslim Brotherhood and Salafis, now freed from Mubarak’s tight leash on those advocating for Sharia and a Muslim Caliphate, have risen to the forefront of Egypt’s political and religious life. When Pope Shenouda III of Alexandria, the leader of the Coptic faith, died on March 17th, 2012, the Islamic leadership of Egypt was quick to condemn him in the vilest fashion possible. Prominent Egyptian Muslim cleric, Wagdi Ghoneim, said, “Praise be to Allah. With the grace of Allah, the head of unbelief and polytheism, known as Shenouda, died yesterday, may Allah exact revenge from him. God’s worshipers and the trees and the animals were all relieved by his death.”

This sort of bigoted, hateful Muslim rhetoric is not only reserved for those of the Jewish faith, who are routinely condemned to death and annihilation by one Islamic Imam after the other. Leading the current onslaught against Christianity in the Middle East, is Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al-Asheikh, the Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia, the highest official of religious law in Islam, who said, “It is necessary to destroy all the churches in the region.” He reminded his listeners, that according to Mohammed, no other religion besides Islam can be allowed on the Arabian Peninsula.

The leaders of the West may deny the truth about the plight of non-Muslims in the Middle East. The leaders of the various sects of Christianity can remain as politically correct as ever. Doing so will not stop the eventual destruction of Christianity in the Middle East. Their denial will not stop the Egyptian Army from using their tanks to run over Copts peacefully protesting the burning of their churches by Muslim mobs, resulting in the death of 24 Copts on October 9, 2011. They will not stop Muslim religious authorities from calling for the burning of every church in the Middle East. Their willful ignorance of the modern Islamist supremacist movement will simply result in the death of all non-Muslim religions in the Middle East, as called for by Mohammed himself in the Qur’an. Until the world stops ignoring Islamist hatred of all other religions, the violence and oppression will only continue. It is time for Western leaders to understand that we are at the turning point in human history. The clash of civilizations, Western and Muslim, is real and it is just beginning.

Footnote: If you would like to read Mr.Ibrahim’s full testimony on the Copts before the United States Congress, refer tohttp://www.raymondibrahim.com/10855/under-threat-the-worsening-plight-of-egypt-coptic. His testimony is quite illuminating and a real eye opener for those of us who do not have access to this information.

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  • http://jc.does-it.net Geneww

    We know God has predicted times will worsen for Christians as we approach the end-times and tribulations. I believe every persecuted and tortured Christian would still prefer this earth’s torment to gain the riches of heaven compared to the eternal abode of their tormentors. http://jc.does-it.net for a one page absolute proof that God authored the Bibles.

  • Durin

    So what can someone in the US do to help Coptic Xians?

  • Schlomotion

    Doesn't it suck the wind out of the article to say "The Plight of Egypt’s Coptic Christians" and then a third of the way in say "accordingly, the everyday average Copt is not 'persecuted'; however, everyday forms of discrimination are common?" I feel exactly as if I bought a bag of Funyuns and found out later that neither Fun nor Onions would occur.

    So the issue here is advertised as Muslim oppression of the Copts, but it pans out that it is actually 12% of Egyptians, who consider themselves like the Jews, are upset that their values and mores form a subset instead of a superset of Egyptian rule. Specifically, Egyptian Copts feel unpreferred and unchosen while Muslims feel preferred and chosen. This seems like perhaps an important issue to Copts living in Egypt, but globally it is a nonissue, akin to whether Asians feel more enfranchised than Pacific Islanders in Orange County. In short, who cares? No one is going to turn Egypt upside down (which end is up again?) simply because Copts would get along better with Israelis.

    • RonCarnine

      Dear Schlo, Goodness sake in this case the ability to investigate an issue makes the author's name!! Coptic Christians are being killed by the hundreds and their numbers have diminished drastically. Their daughters are stolen away and married and raped or raped and married if you prefer. Their homes are burnt, their businesses are destroyed and their churches bombed. You make it sound like they are jealous little children whose classmates got a bigger brownie! They are denied jobs, demoted from jobs, and fired from jobs. They are taking on 3rd class status in their country. (In case your wondering, women are second class citizens in Muslim countries) Mr.Ibrahim makes a distinction between physical persecution and discrimination which many people use as synonymous but incorrectly so. "Globally it is a nonissue" you write, only if you are not Coptic or a member of a human rights organization. That's like saying the Nubia in the Sudan are out of bubblegum or otherwise are having a bad day. You must not read much or at least not as deep as you ought or you wouldn't insult the Coptic Christians the way you do.

      • Schlomotion

        OK, so what is your attitude on Black civil rights in the United States?

        • Ghostwriter

          What does that have to do with the subject at hand?

          • Schlomotion

            Well, he's all interested in the Nuba in Sudan, and church bombings. There were plenty Nuba Sudanese brought to the United States, plenty of church bombings here, some attempted mosque bombings too. Another author on here makes a big issue over whether Paul Robeson ignored slavery and murder in Russia because he brought up slavery and murder here. I am just of the mind that you guys trot out African suffering only when it's a benefit to Israeli politics. Generally speaking, this site and its commenters are on the wrong side of civil rights. So I am curious if this bleeding concern he has for Egyptian minorities 6500 miles away actually extends to people 65 feet away.

          • RonCarnine

            Gee sorry Schlo, but I checked out before I read your comment. I know that there is discrimination here. But "plenty of church bombings here?" Yes there was slavery but if you would care enough to check you will see our Founding Fathers planted the seeds of the destruction of slavery at our nation's beginning. Aren't over 350,00 dead white American's enough for you as they fought to end this awful institution? I was a cop in the US and I can tell you, there are very few hate crimes in the US compared to other nations, especially against American blacks. More hate crimes against Jews than against Muslims. But you have missed the whole point. When you have wholesale murder anywhere in the world we should be concerned about it. Its part of being a human and for me its part of being a Christian.

          • Schlomotion

            Another part of being a Christian is being a missionary. If you feel so strongly about Africa, why don't you go there? I am sure they could benefit from your wisdom and years of experience.

          • RonCarnine

            Sorry Schlo, once again I've been gone for a while. I'm not foreign missionary material otherwise I would be glad to go. I was a pastor for 20 yrs. so I guess my "mission" was here in the US. However, I had a good seminary friend that went to Africa and ministered for 25-30 years and is now back in the States training new Missionaries. The reason I'm retired now is that I'm was injured a few years ago and am disabled. I also suffer from early onset dementia so no mission work for me. I do appreciate your suggestion though.

          • Western Canadian

            GR, don’t waste your time on this jew hating whack-job. He is extremely ignorant, quite dim-witted, and so poorly educated he thinks he is brilliant. Possably a lawyer, and one of the least admirable, he cannot argue based on fact, so he always adds off topic drivel. He has been banned several times, first as HermanCmockery. He is garbage, soon to again be taken out.

    • Sage on the Stage

      But the article does refer to the burning of Coptic churches, the barring of Copts from employment, and from employment in the Egyptian civil service. Do Tantawi and the other murderous fanatics that now rule Egypt need to round up the Copts and exterminate them, for you to admit that Islamist rule is a death blow to religious freedom? (Anywhere in the world?) In addition, what's going on in the Sudan? Millions of Christian south Sudanese are being slaughtered by North Sudanese Muslims. And to adopt your reasoning to the United States; there's no problem with terrorist infiltration of the U.S. through the Mexican border; i.e. that's not happening in YOUR backyard.

      • Schlomotion

        I admit readily that Islamist rule is a death blow to religious freedom. But maybe that's what they want over there. In the meantime, the Statue of Liberty lifts her lamp beside the golden door.

        • Bartimaeus

          You admit the truth then, thank God. However, although “the Statue of Liberty lifts her lamp beside the golden door”, that only means Islam is coming to the USA and one day you may know personally what it is like to live as the Copts. I hope this will never happen but unless the West begins to take a real stand against any form of Sharia, we may all be Copt in the future. Take a look at the video at “The beginning of the end for England”

          • Schlomotion

            I have a few friends who are Copts and a few who are Arameans. The Constitution is the Supreme Law of the Land here. I think as long as we don't allow our own politicians to subvert the Constitution, we won't be in a position weak enough for Muslims to also subvert the Constitution. I think it is important that no religion, no ethnic group, and no financial interest try to set up its own laws above or below the main body of laws that make us a people. England is a travesty. England also charged headlong into being a police surveillance state. I think that is a greater threat to the West.

          • Western Canadian

            Get real, you don’t ‘think’ period. You just repeat the drivel crammed into your skull by low grade profs, and that is about all you do. Only possible excuse for your low grade posts.

        • Sage on the Stage

          "But maybe that's what they want over there." Who is "they?" Islamist rule, and the resulting demise of religious freedom isn't what the Copts want; it isn't what the Jews want; it isn't what the Hindus want.
          And the Statue of Liberty may lift her lamp beside the golden door;(Is this sarcasm? If it is, then sorry, it doesn't cut it) but religious freedom has diminished here in America, too.

          • Schlomotion

            90% of the population of Egypt is Muslim. To hear you talk, Egypt is a three way multicultural society composed of Copts, Jews and Hindus, but usurped by the Muslims. 90%. Ninety percent are Muslim. So maybe they want a Muslim leader.

    • Monty

      As others have responded, this is precisely why Ibrahim knows his stuff and is a judicious writer. Do Copts have it bad? Yes, churches (as the next sentence points out), and other injustices, are commonplace. But does that mean that, at this moment, there is a wholesale genocide, that 15 million Copts are being massacred? No. And only sensationalists would have you think so. Ibrahim's point is that we shouldn't wait till it gets to that point, but at the same time, we shouldn't exaggerated reality, I think…

      • Schlomotion

        I agree we should not let it get to that point. But by we, I mean they. As an American I have no jurisdiction over social equality in Egypt. If Egyptian Coptic Christians come to the United States and get good jobs at tech firms, and run great bakeries, and sandwich shops, and interior design stores, then as an American I am fully willing and able to embrace them in a spirit of brotherhood and look suspiciously at anyone who impugns them.

        • Ghostwriter

          Then,why have you virtually supported the Islamist in previous posts?

          • Schlomotion

            You're confused. I don't support Islamists. I think they are ridiculous. Why did you say "virtually?"

          • Western Canadian

            He should say completely, based on the ignorant and childish nature of your posts.

  • WilliamJamesWard

    If I was being crushed under a tank I would definately feel unpreferred. The Democrats in Congress threw_the South Vietnamese under the bus and over a million died at the hands of the Communists. The Shah_of Iran is deposed witht he help of Jimmy Carter and over a million followers of the Shah are executed._Pol Pot murders without restraint in one of the longest and cruelest massacres of millions in history,_gratis Democrats.__Today millions will be murdered as Islam moves into it's recreated Caliphate,_thank you Hussein Obama and Mullah Hillary and the Democrats.Islamist invasion of Europe by_stealth jihad and colonization is destroying European cultures which helps prepare a slave population_for the European Union gratis the leftist government leaders who betray their native populations._Canada and America, Central and South America are also infested and it grows and will soon become_bloodier in a very wide area, 9/11 may become the good old days, thank you leftist Democrats/Socialists/_Islamists and the idiots that voted into our Government Barry Sotero aka Hussein Obama, to it's and_our ruin………………………………………William

    • randy

      Do not forget the christians that stole north america as they murdered the natives. The left overs were rounded up and put on reserves.

      • Ghostwriter

        Has anyone told you that you're an idiot,randy?

        • Western Canadian

          I suspect his therapist is one of the many who have. Ignorant little toad, isn’t he?

  • DogsHateRomney

    RE: "The Plight of Egypt’s Coptic Christians…"

    Yasser Arafat, is EGYPTIAN!

    Israel is in a struggle for her very life. She is surrounded by nearly two dozen Arab countries, some of whom have already tried several times to wipe Israel out of existence.

    Israel signed a peace treaty with Egypt in 1979.

    Yes, there has been no-war but there is also no peace.
    http://www.masada2000.org/shit-list.html

    All economic, social and diplomatic contact has ceased. The Egyptian Army continues to arm themselves to the teeth and rehearse battle drills on the Sinai Desert — territory Israel handed over to them as part of that very peace treaty!

  • DogsHateRomney

    Re: "The Plight of Egypt’s Coptic Christians."

    Yasser Arafat was Egyptian.

    Israel signed a peace treaty with Egypt in 1979. Yes, there has been no-war but there is also no peace.

    The Egyptian Army continues to arm themselves to the teeth and rehearse battle drills on the Sinai Desert — territory Israel handed over to them as part of that very peace treaty!